Rediff.com  » Sports » EPL: Chelsea held by Wolves in Tuchel's first match in charge

EPL: Chelsea held by Wolves in Tuchel's first match in charge

Last updated on: January 28, 2021 10:07 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

Wolverhampton Wanderers' Adama Traore is tackled by Chelsea's Kai Havertz during their Premier League match at Stamford Bridge in London on Wednesday

IMAGE: Wolverhampton Wanderers' Adama Traore is tackled by Chelsea's Kai Havertz during their Premier League match at Stamford Bridge in London on Wednesday. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Thomas Tuchel's first match as Chelsea head coach ended in a goalless draw as the club shared points with Wolverhampton Wanderers at Stamford Bridge in London on Wednesday.

Chelsea controlled the early proceedings of the match but failed to go ahead as Olivier Giroud narrowly failed to connect with Callum Hudson-Odoi's low cross.

After half-time, Chelsea continued to press for an opener, with Conor Coady pulling off two great blocks to deny Giroud.

Chelsea put in every effort to break the deadlock but they were restricted by Wolves' defence. At the other end, Pedro Neto chipped the ball over Edouard Mendy but his effort clipped the top of the crossbar.

The result moves Chelsea up to eighth in the Premier League table with 30 points, while Wolves are 13th with 23 points.

 

Chelsea are 11 points behind leaders Manchester City, and Tuchel said he did not think his new side could make up that gap.

"The title? Wow. I don't think so. We have to be realistic," he told reporters.

"When you sign for Chelsea as a player or manager, you sign for the expectation to challenge for titles ... the Premier League, the Champions League and all the cups.

"At the same time, we have to be realistic. There are a lot of teams between us and fourth place, a lot of points between us. Maybe the best thing now, by stepping up in the middle of the season, is not to lose focus when we look too far ahead.

"Work on a daily basis on the details, on the progression in our game and the points will follow. We have the capacity to hurt everybody in every competition. It's my job to bring the team to its level as fast as possible. Step by step."

Chelsea next face Burnley in the league on Sunday.

Manchester United go down to Sheffield

 

Manchester United are being held back by inconsistent performances from their top players, former defender Rio Ferdinand said after their shock 2-1 defeat by bottom side Sheffield United in the Premier League on Wednesday.

United, who would have replaced Manchester City at the top of the table with a win, have been on a good run in recent weeks and delivered an inspired performance to knock bitter rivals Liverpool out of the FA Cup on Sunday.

"Last week (against) Liverpool, tremendous performance," Ferdinand told BT Sport.

"(Against) Bottom of the league Sheffield United dour, lifeless at times. The inconsistencies don't win you the league.

"It's what we said about Manchester United for many, many months that the inconsistencies of individuals on this team is what's holding them back."

United's big-name players were anonymous against Chris Wilder's side, who had won only one league game all season coming into the match.

"Bruno Fernandes, who they've relied on so heavily in recent weeks, months, didn't get it going today. Paul Pogba the same," Ferdinand added.

"... Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial were invisible.

"If anybody was starting to get carried away at Old Trafford... it was a reality check."

Manchester United face a trip to Arsenal in the league on Saturday.

Brighton frustrated in goalless draw with Fulham

Brighton & Hove Albion drew 0-0 with Fulham in the Premier League on Wednesday, in a frustrating game for the south coast side, who missed the chance to pull clear of the London club in the relegation zone.

The draw left Brighton 17th in the table on 18 points, five clear of Fulham, who have a game in hand, in 18th place.

Both sides had chances in the first half. Fulham right back Ola Aina blasted a shot just over the bar from outside the box in the fifth minute, and Brighton's Leandro Trossard went close twice in quick succession at the other end.

Brighton repeatedly sliced through Fulham's midfield, but were unable to get a man on the end of any of their resulting crosses.

Fulham's Ivan Cavaleiro dashed forward on the break after a misfired pass by Brighton's Adam Webster, only to shoot wide of the post, and the Seagulls' Pascal Gross fired a free kick just wide of the post as the half drew to a close.

After the break, Fulham's defenders struggled to pass the ball out from the back, but Brighton's front line were unable to convert any of the numerous chances they created.

Fulham had keeper Alphonse Areola to thank for countless saves that kept them in the game, while captain Lewis Dunk was the hero for Brighton, clearing a Ruben Loftus-Cheek shot off his goal-line in stoppage time to hold onto a point.

"It's obviously frustrating that we haven't won at our ground," Dunk told BT Sport.

"We've got to go back and look at it and make sure we start putting the ball in the back of the net," he added.

Brighton manager Graham Potter was similarly frustrated with the result.

"We're creating the chances - that's not easy in this league. But we have to keep believing we can score. Our performances have been good, but the challenge is to turn those chances into points," he said.

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:
AGENCIES
SHARE THIS STORYCOMMENT

World Test Championship - 2021

World Test Championship - 2021